A Sideways Glance at the Hidden Meaning of Aussie Place Names

There are many place names around the world that cry out to tell you their true meaning. Well, perhaps not their ridgey didge true meaning, but who has ever looked at the name Footscray and not felt that it probably also exists as an entry in a medical dictionary? Or Patchewollock, or Humpty Doo? Exactly.

This work attempts to do for (or to) Australian place names what Douglas Adams and John Lloyd did for Britain and the rest of the world, in The Meaning of Liff and The Deeper Meaning of Liff.

Words by Duncan Waldron, illustrations by Matt Davis.

Creative Commons License
This work is licenced under a Creative Commons Licence.


See Why am I doing this? for something approaching a motive.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Haydens Bog - Humpty Doo

Haydens Bog adj
The condition of the toilet in an all-male flat with no occupant over 22.

Hazelmere adj
The serene and dreamy quality of the light on a slightly misty autumn morning.

Heathcote n
The covering of detritus on the family dog, after it has been out exploring the wide open spaces on a damp day.

Hebden adj
Descriptive of the weary trudging of occasional bushwalkers, who wandered too far for comfort, with inadequate footwear, and really wished they had stayed at home with a good book.

Higher Macdonald n
The walking style of a kilted bushwalker after encountering Upper Macdonald (qv).

Hornsby n
Any unwelcome erection that inexplicably develops in the presence of the wife of a clergyman.

Humula n
An unnatural and unhealthy interest in fridges.

Horrane n
The almost paralysing fear that you will turn up at a fancy dress party, find someone else wearing a similar disguise, and realise that theirs is the better one. cf Gypsy Point.

Humpty Doo n
The attitude of a person who, after having it pointed out that a stated intent would be foolish, unhelpful or just downright dangerous, proceeds anyway, because his mind is made up. This attitude is most often found in drunks and teenagers, but often also in politicians.